Toronto Fashion Week Diaries (part two)

The official first day of Toronto’s fashion week is buzzing. It might be cold outside, but inside it’s not. There’s a palpable friction in the air. And it’s also a clusterf**k. Being someone who can’t take a full week off of work, I end up partaking in a selected few shows. That being said, although I’m covering the collections, I’m not critiquing them. Yes, sometimes a snide comment will arise, but it’s done in a polite and constructive way. That’s how Canadians roll, n’est-ce pas?

And before I forget, this week is officially called World Mastercard Toronto Fashion Week, but it doesn’t roll off the tongue (or keyboard) as easily as it should. From now on, I’ll refer it to TFW. Got it? Good. Now, let’s begin…

From sisters Chloe and Parris Gordon comes the Chloe Comme Parris collection. Their trademark boho/rocker girl took 90s grunge more seriously with a luxe bent. Think slipdresses, leather jackets, velvet draping and lace details. Too bad the loud music was a bit of a distraction. Earplugs, anyone?

Skipping the rest of the day and returning the following one was probably one of the smartest things I did. The weather was nasty and attitudes even more so.

On day two, I ran into David Sutcliffe (Rory’s dad from Gilmore Girls!) who was waiting for the next series of shows to start. Yes, he is just as good looking in person, and real-world (not Hollywood world) tall to boot.

Laura Siegel took a tribal trip with her collection. Designed in collaboration with artisans in Asia and South Africa, the separates felt well-worn, even from a distance. The jackets, wraps, and long tunics (in rust, moss and slate) were perfect for layering on cold winter days.

Designer Matt Robinson had his Klaxon Howl man on the dusty plains. It was 40s western with a hit of The Old Man and the Sea. The great outerwear and denim pieces were suitable for the modern man (and a few looks for the modern woman), but I was disappointed I didn’t see models carrying holsters and fishing rods.

David Dixon can be thought of as the Oscar de la Renta of Canada. He never follows trends (or starts them), which is why he has many fans. His day separates were a wash of black and white (a bit formal for the office), but the nighttime looks had many people nodding their heads in appreciation. Pretty wins every time.

One of the newer designers to TFW is Duy Nguyen. Winner of the latest Mercedes-Benz Start Up award, Duy was a welcome addition to the tents. Giving the audience a sense of opulence without grandeur, the collection was full of tailored jackets and pants, fitted cocktail dresses and full ball skirts in fuzzy wools, leather and fur. Luxury without excess. It was a good way to end my night.


Written by Steven Carver

(Photos courtesy

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